Medical Breakthrough Helping Women Predisposed to Miscarriages

"I've never met anyone who met Imogen and didn't smile."

That's Chris Caamano describing his 16-month old to Fox 46's Barbara Pinson Lash.  Her mother Sarah describes their precious daughter as "fearless."

The Caamano's are one of many couples who needed help bringing a baby into this world because Sarah is predisposed to miscarriages.

Dr. Bradley Hurst is a Reproductive Specialist at Carolinas Healthcare System and Director of Assistant Reproduction.  He said there is almost always a reason behind a miscarriage... but it hasn't always been easy to identify a condition other than Fibroids, the shape of the uterus, and/or conditions like diabetes.

"In the past, it was hard to find out what that (other) reason was.  Now we know that most of the time, the miscarriage occurs because of a genetic abnormality associated with a pregnancy," said Dr. Hurst.

With knowledge of these abnormalities comes power -- and in the form of a medical breakthrough known as pre-implantation genetic screening with IVF procedures.

Dr. Hust says this is something they couldn't do five years ago -- "So we can do In Vitro Fertilization, culture the embryos, test the embryos to see if the embryo is genetically normal or not... and when we put back a genetically normal embryo, even for a woman who's had repeated miscarriages -- and pregnancy occurs -- there's only a 5% risk of miscarriage in that pregnancy.  That's remarkably different than in the past."

That was amazing news for the Caamano's, especially after enduring three  miscarriages and a failed IVF attempt.  Chris describes their heart-tugging journey as, "Very difficult.  You know, more emotionally than anything.  Obviously Sarah took the brunt of all the physical drain.  But emotionally it's been a roller coaster."

The Caamano's are on a different ride now.  They're raising their daughter Imogen.  This beautiful life started as the sole embryo tested, that was deemed to be viable.   

Sarah explains how Dr. Hurst shared the good news with her -- "He said 'out of the 10 embryos, nine out of the 10 had chromosomal abnormalities.  But there is one... and that's all you need is one.'  And so I boo-hooed for a while on the  phone (laughs nervously)."

"I think knowing what's available and Dr. Hurst explaining those things to us, and we were able to understand the process, I think that it was... it made it easier for us and we were really thankful for that," said Chris.  

"He was so positive... He said this will absolutely work," added Sarah.

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